2017 Montgomery County Program Impact Report

Approved: January 17, 2018

I. Executive Summary

In 2017, the Cooperative Extension Staff of the Montgomery County Center was proud to serve the citizens of Montgomery County. In order to meet the needs of Montgomery County Citizens, Extension Agents had 17,411 face to face contacts which included 894 hours of workshops, seminars, and hands-on demonstrations with 6061 registered participants. Montgomery County Cooperative Extension Staff also responded to 124,698 citizens through telephone, email, Facebook, Newsletters, and other non-face to face methods providing educational information and resources. 

Volunteers worked with agents to expand Extension programming efforts by contributing 4,465 hours of service; a value of over $107,785. In addition to this number, $54,755 were collected through donations, fundraisers, grants, and user fees to help expand programming and opportunities for Montgomery County Citizens. 

3,668 youth were involved in at least six hours of 4-H activities this year. 192 youth were registered members of a club and attended regular meetings. 464 youth were registered as at-large members and participated in special education programs offered by Extension agents throughout the year. 16 youth attended overnight camp and 51 participated in a week-long day camp experience at Millstone 4-H Camp. Youth activities both inside and outside of schools contribute significantly to school achievement and overall development through the programs we offer to youth. 2,701 youth participated in school enrichment activities offered by Extension and 244 children participated in after-school programming offered by Extension. 14 youth strengthened their research and reasoning skills by participating in County, District, and/or State level presentation competitions bringing home gold, silver, and bronze State Medals. 34 high school students spent the year developing leadership skills, learning about local and state government, and participating in community service activities. 4-H teens also had the opportunity to participate in many activities inside and outside the county including, NC 4-H Congress, NC Youth Summit, NC Citizenship Focus, Teen Retreat, and National 4-H Congress.

Family and Consumer Sciences programming addressed healthy eating, physical activity, chronic disease risk reduction, parenting, food safety, and financial literacy. Programs included: The Speedway to Healthy Curriculum and exhibit for all after-school programs, Simple Snacks program for 4-Her’s, Work-site Wellness/Healthy Eating Made Simple workshops, Healthy Pressure Cooking classes, Cooking with Fresh Produce, Eat Smart Live Strong series for seniors, NC Safe Plates Food Manager Certification Course, Food Preservation Workshops, and 3 financial management classes for youth. NCA&T’s Try Healthy program provided a 6-week nutrition program to all NC Pre-K students in the county, and NCSU’s Steps To Health program included an eight-week nutrition program at Troy and Candor elementary. 

Montgomery County Cooperative Extension partnered with the Montgomery County Schools 21st Century Merit After School Program to provide the Dirty Hands, Healthy Hearts Program. This was a 6-week program in which 244 children, at 4 different after-school programs, engaged in nutrition, gardening, and physical activity lessons. To encourage behavior change, participants were given healthy snacks, plants to care for and take home at the end of the program, and other educational extenders including jump ropes, water bottles, and chop-chop magazines. To encourage additional physical activity outside of the program, the youth were each given a pedometer and challenged to record their exercises each week. Anyone who turned in their exercise log was entered into a drawing for one of four Fitbits. When asked at the end of course evaluation if they would ask their family to buy their favorite fruit or vegetable, 72% said yes; when asked if they would ask their family to start a garden, 52% said yes; and when asked if they will ask their family to join them in physical activity, 59% said yes. 

Agricultural programs conducted in Montgomery County included regular educational and informational sessions for Beekeepers Association, Cattlemen’s Association, Master Gardeners, and Peach Growers. Extension taught a tomato grafting workshop, Tomato 101, Pumpkin Basics, Season Extension workshop on High and Low tunnel use, Photosynthesis for middle grades, Basic Gardening classes for both adults and youth, Forestry Teleconferences, Pesticide and Waste Applicator trainings, Field Days, Farm Tours, Environmental and Agriculture Awareness days which helped participants become more aware of how to grow food, use compost to fertilize it, harvest it and preserve it. They also learned how farmers take care of the environment by using sustainable farming practices to conserve natural resources and lessen the effects of erosion. This program increased awareness and understanding by connecting children and teachers to agriculture in a positive, hands-on way. April through October at the Farmer’s Market, weekly programs focused on cooking/tasting demonstrations, sweet corn and sweet potato variety tasting and demos, pressure canning safety/dial testing, and planting container gardens.

In order for individuals that have pesticide licenses to keep their certifications up to date, pesticide applicators must continually attend trainings to earn credits. These trainings are not only to ensure that individuals can obtain credits to keep their license current but to also make them aware of any new regulations and to keep the participants knowledgeable of different practices that they may or may not remember year after year. 27 Applicators attended workshops and gained skills needed to keep their license up to date.

The late and unpredictable cold weather in March and April the past couple of years have devastated the peach crop in the Sandhills region of the state. A majority of the peach acreage in the state is found in the Sandhills region and when the peach crop is affected so are lives of the farmers that are growing the peaches as well as the local economies found within the region. The stability of having a peach crop each and every year is always a concern with all the peach growers in the Sandhills. Extension conducted a workshop that focused on weed management and frost protection of peach orchards. Peach farmers learned more about wind machines and how they can help during the cold snaps that occur in the region. They also learned the importance of how having a clean orchard floor management plan in place can help with frost protection of the trees. The results from the workshop were outstanding and resulted in 4 individuals adopting frost protection wind machines and 2 others adding an additional wind machine to their current operation.

II. County Background

Montgomery County is a small, rural county in central North Carolina. According to the latest census, the population is approximately 27,820 with 63.9% white, 19.2% black, 1.6% Asian, American Indian and Alaska Native 0.8% and 14.5% Hispanic or Latino. Located at the geographic center of North Carolina, Montgomery County offers businesses unrivaled access to the region, the state, and the eastern United States. A vast transportation network, available buildings and land, a prime location, countless outdoor recreation opportunities, and small town quality of life are just a few of the reasons businesses and employees succeed here. Our location makes Montgomery County a beautiful place to live and do business. We are close to everything, yet we are still able to maintain the small town values that make us who we are.

Montgomery County Cooperative Extension conducted an extensive environmental scan utilizing surveys, focus groups, one-on-one interviews and advisory committee meetings. The Advisory Leadership Council then prioritized the needs of the county citizens and selected to continue to address the following objectives with an addition to address a growing interest in local foods:

• Profitable and Sustainable Plant and Animal Production Systems
• Safety and Security of our Food and Farm Systems
• School to Career (Youth and Adults)
• Community Development
• Healthy Eating, Physical Activity and Chronic Disease Risk Reduction
• Volunteer Readiness
• Local Food Systems

Montgomery County Cooperative Extension staff will design, implement and evaluate educational programming in the identified areas to bring about positive change for the citizens of Montgomery County.

III. Objectives to Address the Cooperative Extension Long Range Plan

North Carolina's plant production systems will become more profitable and sustainable.

Value* Outcome Description
67Number of crop (all plant systems) producers increasing/improving knowledge, attitudes, and/or skills as related to: 1. Best management production practices (cultural, nutrient, and genetics) 2. Pest/insect, disease, weed, wildlife management 3. Financial/Farm management tools and practices (business, marketing, government policy, human resources) 4. Alternative agriculture, bioenergy, and value-added enterprises
4Number of Extension initiated and controlled County demonstration test sites (new required for GLF/PSI reporting)
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
6Number of crop (all plant systems) producers adopting best management practices, including those practices related to nutrient management, conservation, production, cultivars, pest management (weeds, diseases, insects), business management, and marketing
3250Net income gains realized by the adoption of best management practices, including those practices related to nutrient management, conservation, production, cultivars, pest management (weeds, diseases, insects), business management, and marketing
5Number of producers reporting increased dollar returns per acre or reduced costs per acre
8Number of producers reporting reduction in fertilizer used per acre
350Number of acres in conservation tillage or other Best Management Practice
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Adults and youth will apply financial management practices to increase their economic security, which include to: meet basic necessities, increase savings, reduce debt, and build long-term assets.

Value* Outcome Description
36Number of people gaining basic financial management knowledge and/or skills (such as; budgeting, record keeping, goal setting, writing goals, consumer decision-making)
13Number of people gaining knowledge and/or skills in managing financial products and financial identity (such as; credit, debt management, identify theft, credit reports and scores, scams, banking skills)
25Number of people gaining knowledge and/or skills to increase family economic security (such as; how to access: SNAP benefits, SHIIP Medicare Part D; food cost management, cost comparison skills, shop for reverse mortgages, select long term care insurance, etc.)
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
10Number of people implementing basic financial management strategies (such as; developing a budget, keeping records, etc.)
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

North Carolina's animal production systems will become more profitable and sustainable.

Value* Outcome Description
993Number of animal producers increasing/improving knowledge, attitudes, and/or skills as related to: 1. Best management production practices (cultural, nutrient, and genetics) 2. Pest/insect, disease, weed, wildlife management 3. Financial/Farm management tools and practices (business, marketing, government policy, human resources) 4. Alternative agriculture, bioenergy, and value-added enterprises
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
46Number of animal producers implementing Extension-recommended best management practices for animal waste management
3Number of waste management certifications gained or maintained due to Extension education efforts
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Producers will increase sales of food locally to more agriculturally aware consumers through market development, producer and consumer education, and new farmer and infrastructure support.

Value* Outcome Description
668Number of adults (including producers, food business owners, etc.) who improved knowledge of local food and agricultural systems.
770Number of children/youth who improved knowledge of local food and agricultural systems.
12Number of producers who improve local food marketing skills or knowledge.
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Agricultural producers, workers, food handlers and consumers will adopt safer food and agricultural production, handling, and distribution practices that reduce workplace and home injuries/illnesses, enhance food security, and increase the quality and safety of food that North Carolinians prepare and consume.

Individuals and groups will acquire leadership and decision making capacities needed to guide and actively participate in local and state organizations.

Value* Outcome Description
35Number of adults increasing/improving knowledge, attitudes, skills, and/or aspirations regarding leadership
7Number of adults assuming new/expanded leadership roles in the community
88Number of youth increasing/improving knowledge, attitudes, skills, and/or aspirations regarding leadership
72Number of youth assuming new/expanded leadership roles in the community
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
8Number of adults increasing/improving knowledge, attitudes, skills, and/or aspirations regarding leadership
3Number of adults assuming new/expanded leadership roles in the community
70Number of youth increasing/improving knowledge, attitudes, skills, and/or aspirations regarding leadership
70Number of youth assuming new/expanded leadership roles in the community
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Youth and adults will address community issues and/or challenges through volunteerism.

Value* Outcome Description
31Number of adult participants acquiring the skills needed to serve as a volunteer
38Number of youth participants reporting aspirations to serve in new or expanded volunteer roles in community
3Number of adult participants reporting aspirations to serve in new or expanded volunteer roles in community
15Number of hours adult volunteer training conducted
10Number of hours youth volunteer training conducted
2Number new volunteers recruited
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
10Increased number of hours contributed by trained youth volunteers
5Increased number of hours contributed by trained adult volunteers
8Number of youth volunteers serving in new or expanded roles within Extension
2Number of adult volunteers serving in new or expanded roles within Extension
2Number of youth volunteers serving in new or expanded roles beyond Extension, including community boards and task forces
1Number of adult volunteers serving in new or expanded roles beyond Extension, including community boards and task forces
4Number of youth volunteers recruiting and/or training new volunteers
2Number of adult volunteers recruiting and/or training new volunteers
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Futures that Work: School to Career Pathways

Value* Outcome Description
14Number of teachers trained in 4-H STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) curriculum
364Number of youth (students) increasing knowledge in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math)
156Total number of female participants in STEM program
29Number of high school age youth (students) participating as members of 4-H clubs
561Number of youth (students) increasing knowledge of career/employability skills
104Number of adults increasing knowledge of career/employability skills
141Number of youth (students) increasing knowledge of entrepreneurship
94Number of adults increasing knowledge of entrepreneurship
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
14Number of teachers using 4-H STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) curriculum in their classrooms
364Number of youth (students) gaining knowledge in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math)
561Number of youth (students) gaining career / employability skills
104Number of adults gaining career / employability skills
141Number of youth (students) gaining entrepreneurship skills
94Number of adults gaining entrepreneurship skills
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

North Carolinians will make decisions and adopt practices that implement effective resource protection and conservation.

Value* Outcome Description
337Number of youth and adults demonstrating increased knowledge of natural resources and environmental issues
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Youth and adult program participants will make healthy food choices, achieve the recommended amount of physical activity and reduce risk factors for chronic diseases.

Value* Impact Description
42Number of adults increasing their fruit and vegetables consumption
452Number of youth increasing their fruit and vegetable consumption
473Number of participants increasing their physical activity
6Number of participants who consume less sodium in their diet
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

IV. Number of Contacts Made by Extension

Type of ContactNumber
Face-to-face* 17,411
Non face-to-face** 107,287
Total by Extension staff in 2017 124,698
* Face-to-face contacts include contacts that Extension personnel make directly with individuals through one-on-one visits, meetings, and other activities where staff members work directly with individuals.
** Non face-to-face contacts include contacts that Extension personnel make indirectly with individuals by telephone, email, newsletters, news articles, radio, television, and other means.

V. Designated Grants Received by Extension

Type of GrantAmount
Contracts/Grants $35,000.00
Gifts/Donations $8,400.00
In-Kind Grants/Donations $6,800.00
United Way/Foundations $4,000.00
User Fees $555.00
Total $54,755.00

VI. Volunteer Involvement in Extension Programs

Number of Volunteers* Number of Volunteer Hours Known client contacts by volunteers Dollar Value at 24.69
4-H: 455 3,667 4,569 $ 90,538.00
Advisory Leadership System: 12 96 0 $ 2,370.00
Extension Community Association: 0 0 0 $ 0.00
Extension Master Gardener: 13 28 33 $ 691.00
Other: 124 770 1,038 $ 19,011.00
Total: 604 4561 5640 $ 112,611.00
* The number of volunteers reflects the overall number of volunteers for multiple events.

VII. Membership of Advisory Leadership System

Montgomery Advisory Leadership Council
Janno Lewis
Bryant Hampton
Debbi Musika
Bruce Thompson
Lane Poole
Lowell Russell
Cindy Taylor
Don Thompson
Kayla Shomaker
Archie Smith
Myra Taylor
Gary Dunn
Jeremy Martin
Charles Lucas
Shirley Harris
Family and Youth Program Committee
Rhonda Peters - Health Department
Kristen Cook - First Health
Tammy Owens-Montgomery Community College
Austin Morris - Youth Representative
Jesse Tall - Eckerd Youth Alternatives
Kimberly Berger - Health Department
Linda Sedberry - Wesleyan Homes
Laurie Brown - School Representative
Doshia Haywood - County Administration
Jack Cagle - Montgomery County Schools
Vance Thomas - Montgomery County After School
Montgomery County Agriculture Advisory Board
Benny Hampton, Chair
Archie Smith, Vice-Chair
Boon Chesson, Treasurer
Jeremy Haywood
Jimmie Byrd
Ray Allen
Bruce Thompson
Jamie Warner, Ex Officio-Extension Agent
Andrew Gahagan, Ex Officio-County Planner
Joseph Huntley, Ex Officio-Soil and Water
Bee Keepers Board
Frank Kissell
Rene Kissell
Janno Lewis
Buck Lewis
Velvet Motsinger
Nancy Rupert
Cattleman Board
Archie Smith
Eddie Maness
Danny & Sondra McRae
David Hurley
Jeff Maness
Gene & Charlon McNeill
Mitchell Scheer
Donald Bulla
Jack Callicutt Jr.
Jim Chandler
Jeremy Haywood
Franklin Byrd

VIII. Staff Membership

Molly Alexi
Title: County Extension Director
Phone: (910) 576-6011
Email: molly_alexi@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: County Extension Director; Community and Rural Development; and Family and Consumer Science

Candice Christian
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Consumer and Retail Food Safety
Phone: (919) 515-9148
Email: Candice_Christian@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: The overall goal of the Area Specialized Agents (ASAs) in Consumer & Retail Food Safety is to support FCS Agents in delivering timely and evidence-based food safety education and information to stakeholders in North Carolina.

Marti Day
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Dairy
Phone: (919) 542-8202
Email: marti_day@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Responsible for educational programs for dairy farmers, youth with an interest in dairy projects and the general public with an interest in dairy foods and the dairy industry.

Kim Gibson
Title: County Extension Administrative Assistant
Phone: (910) 576-6011
Email: kim_gibson@ncsu.edu

Richard Goforth
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Poultry
Phone: (704) 283-3801
Email: richard_goforth@ncsu.edu

Chrissy Haynes
Title: Extension Agent, 4-H Youth Development
Phone: (910) 576-6011
Email: chrissy_haynes@ncsu.edu

Marissa Herchler
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Animal Food Safety (FSMA Programs)
Phone: (919) 515-5396
Email: marissa_herchler@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Marissa is an Area Specialized Agent for animal food safety, with emphasis on the new Food Safety Modernization Act rules, as they apply to feed mills in North Carolina. Please contact Marissa with any FSMA related questions, or PCQI training inquiries.

Sequoia Hill
Title: Nutrition Educator, Family and Consumer Sciences
Phone: (910) 576-6011
Email: shill3@ncsu.edu

Stacey Jones
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Commercial Nursery and Greenhouse
Phone: (704) 920-3310
Email: stacey_jones@ncsu.edu

Colby Lambert
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Forestry
Phone: (910) 814-6041
Email: colby_lambert@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provides educational opportunities and technical support to forest landowners, agents, and forest industry in eastern North Carolina.

Bill Lord
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Water Resources
Phone: (919) 496-3344
Email: william_lord@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Water quality education and technical assistance

Deborah Malarz
Title: Program Assistant
Phone: (910) 576-6011
Email: deborah_malarz@ncsu.edu

Currey Nobles
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Food Safety
Phone: (919) 515-9520
Email: canobles@ncsu.edu

Rhonda Peters
Title: Extension Agent, Family and Consumer Sciences
Phone: (910) 576-6011
Email: rtpeter2@ncsu.edu

Elena Rogers
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Food Safety - Fresh Produce Western NC
Phone: (828) 352-2519
Email: elena_rogers@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provide educational programs, training and technical support focusing on fresh produce safety to Agents and growers in Western NC.

Brad Thompson
Title: Extension Agent, Agriculture - Horticulture
Phone: (910) 576-6011
Email: brad_thompson@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Commerical and Home Fruit and Vegetable Production, Master Gardener's, Beekeeping, Agriculture

Allan Thornton
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Commercial Vegetables and Fruits
Phone: (910) 592-7161
Email: allan_thornton@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Vegetable Extension Specialist. Conducts Extension and applied research programs for commercial vegetable and fruit growers and agents in eastern North Carolina.

Jamie Warner
Title: Extension Agent, Agriculture - Livestock and Forestry
Phone: (910) 576-6011
Email: jamie_warner@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Beef Cattle, Sheep, Goats, Horses, 4-H Livestock, Forages, Forestry, Voluntary Agriculture Districts, Local Foods

Mitch Woodward
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Watersheds and Water Quality
Phone: (919) 250-1112
Email: mdwoodwa@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: NC Cooperative Extension's Goals include: - NC's natural resources and environmental quality will be protected, conserved and enhanced. - NC will have profitable, environmentally sustainable plant, animal and food systems. Protecting our environmental resources, particularly drinking water quality, is a top priority in NC. NC Cooperative Extension is a leader in teaching, researching, and accelerating the adoption of effective water quality protection practices.

IX. Contact Information

Montgomery County Center
203 W Main St
Troy, NC 27371

Phone: (910) 576-6011
Fax: (910) 576-2635
URL: http://montgomery.ces.ncsu.edu